Thursday, July 29, 2010

Old family dynamics die hard

I love my family, I really do. I hesitate to write negatively about them on my blog, but I suppose you could call this a preemptive strike. When husband and I were living in Louisiana, we would hang out with my parents all the time, and I loved it. Friends thought I was weird, but that didn't matter, it was always blast having dinner or shopping with them. They lived only 20 minutes away, so there was something so comforting about just calling up and saying "hey, come to town, let's go to Target". I have an older sister and brother in law and 2 nieces and nephew in upstate New York. They've lived there for 15 years. My sister is 10 years older than me, so there has always been a distance between us, long before she left the south. But at this point in our lives, we're basically on the same level, except that I don't have children. We talk on the phone often and it's always pleasant.

Unfortunately, the problem arises when we are ALL together as a family, especially if husband is not with us due to work. Every summer we go to the Alabama Gulf Coast for a family vacation. I usually end up in tears at least 3 times during the 7 days, more so if husband isn't there. Next week is that vacation, and husband can't come. He loves my parents and my sister and her family, but I think he's secretly relieved that he can't get the time off, because he knows I'll end up angry and sad and who wants to use up their vacation days for that? I'm dreading this trip. Initially I told my mother I was not going, that I would see them all when they came to Houston after the beach, but she laid a guilt trip on me that would make mothers in a middle eastern democracy proud (is that PC enough?), so I just threw my hands up and said I'd go. It's a shame to dread a trip to a gorgeous (despite the oil spill) beach. It's a shame to dread seeing family you rarely see. I need some advice. I need some kind of method to handle when my sister and mother start treating me like a 14 year old when in reality I'm married and nearly 30. I always come off as the little kid, likely because I start to act like one. Tell me what I can tell myself to relax. Old family dynamics die hard.

5 comments:

The Driller's Girl said...

I say that you should just walk away when they start at you! i JUST started meditation, and it makes a huge difference! It helps you to clear your mind and feel refreshed. and it only takes 20 mins! (I downloaded an app for my Iphone!) I'm on like day 3, and when ever I get pissed about something (like how my boyfriend wanted to play video games, instead of play with me...lol! I just meditated! and BAM! I was over it!)

Unlikely Oilfield Wife said...

That's a really great idea, I'm going to search for the app ASAP. I'm also bringing my running shoes, so that I can work out every time I feel myself getting tense. Heck, I may be 10 pounds thinner in a couple of weeks :)

The Driller's Girl said...

I hope you found the app! The one I downloaded is called Simply Being. And, I have to say, its really changed my focus on things! GOOD IDEA on the running shoes!!! also, eat a bunch of watermelon! man o man! I lost 2 pounds on my 4 day vacation because of all the watermelon I ate! and its SOOOO good!!!! :)

Anonymous said...

How about telling them specifically when they say or do something that makes you feel like a 14 year old.

Kerree said...

You can try telling them how you feel. If you don't want to do that, or it doesn't work, change your attitude toward the whole situation. Instead of seeing it as a bad thing, start having some fun with it. Act like a 14 year old! Isn't that what holidays are for anyway?

If you need a plan B, when they start treating you like a 14 year old, treat them like old ladies. That should stop them lol